Nagaland Governor RN Ravi today reviewed the status and progress of construction of all the roads being built/ upgraded under central government schemes or centrally sponsored schemes.
A press communiqué issued by the Raj Bhavan stated that the Chief Secretary, Additional Chief Secretary, Home Commissioner, Commissioner & Secretary, Works & Housing, Engineer-in-Chief and Chief Engineer, Nagaland were present beside senior officials of NHIDCL and contractors during the review meeting.
Projects reviewed include 14 packages of 845.745 kms being built by NHIDCL and 4 projects of 132.59 kms funded by NEC being built by State Government.
During the sitting, it was revealed that a significant reason for slow progress and compromised quality was rampant extortions by anti-social elements purportedly belonging to underground armed organisations, the communiqué stated.
Contractors narrated their harrowing experiences how, they are being threatened on a day to day basis for more and more ransom money and their officials including project managers being abducted for days together. Some of the Engineers have already fled to save their lives causing unacceptable delay in completion of the projects, the communiqué further informed.
Taking serious note of such activities by “anti-social criminal elements of over half-a-dozen groups which was severely jeopardising the progress of roads in Nagaland,” the Governor directed the DGP and IG Assam Rifles to take the most stringent actions against such elements and their patrons.
He directed the DGP to set up an SIT (Special Investigation Team) for registration and focussed investigation of all cases against such elements. He also directed the DGP to constitute a Highway Construction Protection Force to firmly deal with such elements and provide security to road construction personnel.
The Governor has also decided to do monthly review of progress and security of road projects.
The communiqué also informed that the Governor has been regularly monitoring the progress of Dimapur-Kohima four laning project with roads being a priority area of concern.